Danny Murphy amazed by what Mikel Arteta did in Arsenal win
Danny Murphy has told Match of the Day that Mikel Arteta did brilliantly with his substitutions to help Arsenal beat Bournemouth in such dramatic fashion on Saturday.
The Gunners have regained their five-point lead at the top of the table. But how they did it will not be forgotten by anyone inside the Emirates Stadium on Saturday in a hurry.
The Cherries led 2-0. But Arsenal were unable to produce the most incredible comeback, with Reiss Nelson scoring the stoppage-time winner for the Premier League leaders.
Murphy amazed by Arteta role in Arsenal win
It must have felt like a day where nothing was going to go right for Arsenal. Obviously, they went behind in the first 10 seconds of the game. And they lost Leandro Trossard to injury midway through the first-half.
Emile Smith Rowe came on for the Belgian. Meanwhile, Arteta took Takehiro Tomiyasu off at the break, with Ben White coming on instead.
Ultimately, Smith Rowe was brought off later in the game himself. And it was Nelson who replaced him and went on to send the Emirates into a frenzy with his late strike.
Understandably, the Match of the Day pundits were full of praise for the players. But Murphy made a point of lauding Arteta for the impact he had on the game.
“Can I just say as well, I thought Arteta deserves great credit here,” he told Match of the Day. “He made two substitutions today, they were ruthless. Tomiyasu off at half-time, not playing particularly well. Ben White came on, he scored a goal. He brings Emile Smith Rowe off, who’d already come on.
“He subbed the sub to bring Reiss Nelson on, not thinking really about the player, thinking this is what we need for the team. And I thought that was a brilliant bit of management, and a tough decision for him I have to say. Well played Arteta.”
Smith Rowe will surely understand manager’s logic
You would imagine that Smith Rowe would understand why he was taken off. Obviously, there is a stigma to being substituted after coming on yourself. But this was not an Emmanuel Eboué situation.
Smith Rowe is still working his way back to full fitness after a lengthy injury. His next chance to shine is just around the corner. And had he been offered 45 minutes before the game, he probably would have taken it.
Ultimately, Arsenal are throwing all they can at winning the title. And judging by the celebrations at the end, no-one had an issue with Arteta’s decision-making.
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